FUEL BOWL HEATER - Diesel Forum - TheDieselStop.com
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99 & up 7.3L Power Stroke Engine and Drivetrain Discussion of the 99 & up 7.3L Power Stroke diesel engine and drivetrain in the 1999-Up Super Duty trucks and Excursions. No gas engine discussion allowed except on transmissions and drivetrain that pertain to all models. Please confine discussion of topics in this forum to those items that are specific to the 7.3L Power Stroke engine.

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Old 05-25-2011, 07:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
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FUEL BOWL HEATER

How do you determine if the fuel bowl heater is not working? 99.5 F-250 7.3L...It cranked good & strong put nothing, It got cold today enough to snow, truck was not plugged in...The WTS did come on but no start.
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Old 05-25-2011, 07:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I doubt that was your issue - more likely glow plugs or glow plug relay. Kevin has a good write-up here:

Hard/No Start? Check here first.

As far as the heater goes - you could pull the plug and check for voltage when the key is on. Then check for resistance across the heater. Or, you could pull the cap, pull your fuel pump fuse, and turn the key - use the digital thermometer (finger) to see if its getting the fuel warm.
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Old 05-25-2011, 08:14 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hmmmm??? Had this issue a while back until I put a stancor relay in.....Have they been reliable?
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Old 05-25-2011, 08:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Is the fuel pump fuse # 22??
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Old 05-25-2011, 09:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Fuel heater has absolutely nothing to do with starting. More likely you have a glowplug system issue. Read RT's link.
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Old 05-26-2011, 09:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I have the same question. How do you check the bowl heater ?

I know my old truck I remember opening it when I was fiddling around while changing the fuel filter and I could see it smoking the last bit of diesel.

Is it just drain best to look in the bowl and turn the truck to "wait to start" mode ?
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Old 05-26-2011, 09:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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mine was unpluged for 2 yrs. sounds like GPR.
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Old 05-30-2011, 10:34 PM   #8 (permalink)
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It is difficult to check the heater, as the plastic Connection is both the water in fuel sensor, and a Thermostat, that turns heater on and off.

You can check to see that voltage is getting to the connector, but you have no idea if the sensor is passing the voltage inside the bowl, or if the heater itself is bad.

I have owned a few PSD, and when I bought the last one, I noticed that when cold, it didn't run as good as it should when it was cold, and was effected by #2 fuel far more than it should have been when the engine was warm, but the temps outside COLD.

I pulled my entire bowl, and tested the sensor by ohming it, then putting it in the freezer and ohming it, to make certain it was making the connection when it was cold....it did....I ohmed the heater, and it was open. Tested further, and it was the diode on the heater that was bad.....Not sure why it needs a diode, but I replaced the heater element with a new one....could have just bypassed the diode...

Most people will NEVER know if the heater is not working.....But being I am in tune with my PSD, and have owned a few, and am a mechanic, I recognized the symptoms.

If it weren't for me liking to run straight #2 in the middle of winter, I doubt I would ever have noticed.
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Old 05-30-2011, 10:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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The fuel heater is a federally mandated device all automotive diesels must have. It's SOLE function is to heat gelled fuel so it may pass through the filter and allow the engine to start. It doesn't work very well (if at all) for this and has absolutely no affect on the operating of the engine nor cold starts.
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